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Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC)
Autism Research Database
Office of Autism Research Coordination (OARC)
 
Project Element Element Description

Project Title

Project Title

An evaluation of brief scheduled breaks to reduce distress in typical and developmentally disabled children undergoing restorative dental treatment

Principal Investigator

Principal Investigator

Allen, Keith

Description

Description

Although most children seen by dentists are well behaved and cooperative, 20-25 percent of all children are sufficiently distressed and disruptive that many practitioners are not willing to provide care for these children, limiting their access to quality oral health care. The problems are even more pronounced in children with autism and related developmental disabilities. This is compounded by the fact that most dental students report little or no preparation in providing care to individuals with disabilities, resulting in few dentists treating children with developmental disabilities. This is a particular concern because children with developmental disabilities, who do not have the ability to understand and assume responsibility for or cooperate with preventive oral health practices, are particularly susceptible to oral disease. Despite recent calls for additional nonpharmacological methods of behavior management to address these challenges, there are relatively few well-controlled empirical evaluations of nonpharmacological methods of behavior management for use with children and even fewer well-controlled studies or programs of research targeting children with autism or related developmental disabilities. The purpose of this research project is to address both of these needs: first, to conduct a well-controlled, randomized trial of a promising behavioral management procedure, and second, to extend a program of research that has found this technique to be effective with a small number of difficult children but has never been tested in large numbers of children or in children with disabilities. Participants will be 180 children, 2-8 years of age, requiring restorative dental treatment and will include both typically developing children as well as those with autism and related developmental disabilities. Participants in the experimental condition will receive a program of scheduled breaks provided by the dentist, which has been found in preliminary studies to be a potent intervention in highly disruptive young children. Observations of distress behavior as well as ratings of child reactions will provide direct assessment of program benefits, while comparison of time spent on behavior management will provide data for a cost-benefit analysis. The investigation extends a program of research dedicated to evaluating nonpharmacological behavior management methods for dentists has the potential to improve access to quality oral health care for all children.

Funder

Funder

National Institutes of Health

Fiscal Year Funding

Fiscal Year Funding

185625

Current Award Period

Current Award Period

2010-2011

Strategic Plan Question

Strategic Plan Question

Question 5: Where Can I Turn For Services?

Strategic Plan Objective

Strategic Plan Objective

Yellow dot: Objective has some degree of funding, but less than the recommended amount. 5LE. Support three studies of dental health issues for people with ASD by 2015. This should include: o One study on the cost-benefit of providing comprehensive dental services, including routine, non-emergency medical and surgical dental services, denture coverage, and sedation dentistry to adults with ASD as compared to emergency and/or no treatment. IACC Recommended Budget: $900,000 over 3 years. o One study focusing on the provision of accessible, person-centered, equitable, effective, safe, and efficient dental services to people with ASD. IACC Recommended Budget: $900,000 over 3 years. o One study evaluating pre-service and in-service training program to increase skill levels in oral health professionals to benefit people with ASD and promote interdisciplinary practice. IACC Recommended Budget: $900,000 over 3 years.

Project Link

Project Link

An evaluation of brief scheduled breaks to reduce distress in typical and developmentally disabled children undergoing restorative dental treatment (External web link)

Institution

Institution

University of Nebraska Medical Center

State/Country

State/Country

Nebraska

Project Number

Project Number

1R15DE021014-01

Federal or Private?

Federal or Private?

Federal

Received ARRA Funding?

Received ARRA Funding?

Yes

History/Related Projects

History/Related Projects

N/A

 
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